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Thursday, Feb 11th

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Einstein a-go-go! Scientists rejoice as gravitational waves detected

Gravitational wave detectedIn a landmark discorvery, ripples in space and time first hypothesized by physicist Albert Einstein a century ago have been detected, with scientists suggesting that the observation of these gravitational waves could now open a new window for studying the cosmos.

The researchers said they detected gravitational waves coming from two black holes —extraordinarily dense objects whose existence also was foreseen by Einstein — that orbited one another, spiraled inward and smashed together. They said the waves were the product of a collision between two black holes 30 times as massive as the Sun, located 1.3 billion light years from Earth.

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Hundreds of galaxies found hiding behind the Milky Way

Galaxies found behind Milky WayAstronomers in Australia have confirmed the discovery of hundreds of galaxies hidden by the Milky Way and a gravitational anomaly known as the Great Attractor.

Until now, the galaxy-rich region of space some 250 million light-years away has been obscured by the stars and dust of the Milky Way.

"The Milky Way is very beautiful of course and it's very interesting to study our own galaxy but it completely blocks out the view of the more distant galaxies behind it," Lister Staveley-Smith, a professor at the University of Western Australia, said in a press release.

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Engineer who warned of 1986 Challenger disaster still racked with guilt, three decades on

Engineer still feels guilty over unheeded Challenger warningThe entire nation was stunned into silence watching the Space Shuttle Challenger abruptly blow apart 73 seconds after launch, but one man wasn't. In fact, he blew the whistle as loud as he could in the days leading up to the worst disaster in the history of the American space program exactly 30 years ago Thursday.

The problem was, no one with any authority listened to Bob Eberling.

An engineer at Morton Thiokol, the rocket propulsion firm that supplied the space shuttle's two solid rocket boosters, Eberling repeatedly warned NASA that the launch conditions that day could be catastrophic.

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The end is nearer: 'Doomsday Clock' to change to show destruction is at hand

Doomsday ClockScientists will announce how close humanity is to extinction Tuesday by updating the minute hand on the "Doomsday Clock."

According to the Chicago-based Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the Doomsday Clock is "an internationally recognized design that conveys how close we are to destroying our civilization with dangerous technologies of our own making."

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Stephen Hawking: Human race is in danger, and it's our fault

Steven HawkingScience superstar Stephen Hawking says humanity is inching closer to demise, and we are to blame.

The physicist made the comments during the annual BBC Reith lecture, and said it’s inevitable that in the next “thousand or ten thousand years,” a disaster will strike the planet.

"By that time we should have spread out into space, and to other stars, so a disaster on Earth would not mean the end of the human race,” he said during the BBC lecture.

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Scientists: Solid evidence for 9th planet in solar system

Planet XScientists say they finally have "solid evidence" for Planet X, a true ninth planet on the fringes of our solar system.

The gas giant is thought to be almost as big as Neptune and orbiting billions of miles beyond Neptune's path — distant enough to take 10,000 to 20,000 years to circle the sun. This Planet 9, as the two Caltech researchers call it, hasn't been spotted yet.

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Largest Milky Way age map shows how galaxy grew up

Milky WayAn international team of researchers have created the first comprehensive age map of the Milky Way Galaxy.

The map encodes age data from 70,000 stars and encompasses roughly half the galaxy, extending 50,000 light-years across from our solar system. The first map of such magnitude offers a visualization of the galaxy's growth over time.

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